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  • Writer's pictureAmanda

3 Signs of Hidden Hardwood Floors

The plan for my kitchen floor renovation evolved quickly. I had originally planned to tile the floor with a traditional Saltillo tile. But in a total HGTV-never-gonna-happen-in-real-life moment, I made a small and exciting discovery that I had original hardwood floors hiding underneath all that yellow linoleum. Here are the signs that led me to the discovery:

1. My linoleum floors sat about a half inch higher than the floors in the rest of the house.

The height difference gave me a clue that the linoleum was likely not the original floor. Had it been installed at the time the house was built, it would have been flush with the rest of the hardwoods. It didn't give me any clues as to what would be underneath it, but I had a pretty strong suspicion it wasn't original. I also did a ton of research on types and styles of linoleum, and based on the pattern it was clearly from the 1970s (so definitely not original as my house was built in 1950).

2. After pulling back some of the linoleum, I discovered planked wood.

After pulling back the linoleum and plywood, this is what I found. It looked to me like hardwood, but I still couldn't be 100% sure. A lot of old houses in Austin have wide plank subfloors that look similar. It could also have just been a patch to raise the floor. But I could tell it had been sanded down at one point, because I could see a small height difference in the wood that was under the transition and the rest of the board. That was a pretty good indication that these were hardwoods. I also couldn't see daylight between the cracks - also a great sign that it wasn't a subfloor!

3. The subfloor did not match the planks of wood I was seeing in the kitchen.

To confirm that these planks were for sure not the subfloor, I ventured under my house and into the crawl space. I was scared, but it actually wasn't as spooky as I expected! The subfloors were much wider (1x6) and ran diagonally across the joists. This is very common in older homes. This was also confirmation that the planks I was seeing in the kitchen were not the subfloor!

I decided to hire this job out, including demo, sanding, staining. When I first moved into my house, my fiancé and I refinished all of the hardwoods, and I vowed to never do it again. And it was so worth it to hire it out! They knocked out the entire job in one day! If you're in the Austin are, definitely check out J&J Painting and Remodeling. They do incredible work. And without further ado, here is the before and after!



(We also upgraded our stove. Here is the one we bought.)





Here is a breakdown of the total cost of the floor:

  • Labor: $2,000

  • Stain (We used 350ml of the color Natural with a touch of the color Chocolate): $89

  • Trim and Quarter Round: $110


Total: $2,199 - That brings my kitchen renovation total to $9,205 to date (which includes new appliances)!

And with that I am only 2 projects away from FINISHING THIS KITCHEN RENOVATION!

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